Irving Azoff Assures Nicki Minaj That Travis Scott Doesn’t Hate Her: ‘It’s All Show Biz’

Chris Willman

Nicki Minaj had her new manager, Irving Azoff, on the air for a guest interview on her Beats 1 talk show — and after she rescinded an obscene insult she’d lobbed Azoff’s way in less cordial times, she had one question for him: “So, Irving, do you think Travis Scott hates me?”

Minaj had previously used this same platform to call Scott “the “hoe n—a of the week.” Given that Azoff now represents both artists — and that her beef with Scott was part of what got his attention and, ironically, drew him to Minaj as a client — it may come as little surprise that he indicated there was no remaining ill will on Scott’s side.

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“No, absolutely not,” said Azoff, calling in from London to Minaj’s “Queen Radio” show. “No, listen, people gotta realize this is show biz.” (“That’s right,” interjected Minaj.) “You’re an entertainer, okay?” continued the managerial giant. “It’s all part of show biz. All you guys fight hard for your charts; you fight hard to sell your tickets. And great artists like you and Travis admire each other’s work. I know for a fact he admires your work a lot. It’s a great business, and you’ve had great success, he’s had great success, and they’re two great success stories that I’m sure are going to continue.”

Be it a real feud or real show business, the beef with Scott was responsible for bringing Azoff and Minaj together. As Variety previously reported, Minaj was known to be in talks to sign up with Azoff’s Full Stop Management shortly after parting ways with Gee Roberson and Cortez Bryant and Blueprint/ Maverick, who had represented her for the majority of her career — although she didn’t declare the alignment to her public until having Azoff on the air.

There was another matter to clear up, and that was Minaj having given Azoff her “c—scker of the day” award last August, when she was angry with Scott and transferred that wrath to her rival’s manager.

“I never retracted a c—sucker award before, but today I’m retracting one,” she said. “For everyone who does not know, a few months back when another rapper dropped his album, I came up here and gave them ‘c—sucker of the day’… month… year… I dunno. And that person’s manager got it real bad from me. I went crazy on him. I had never met him before … and I said what I said. It’s the funniest story.” Indeed. An associate “texted me and said ‘I’ve got an email from someone’ and the subject said ‘Nicki Minaj’ and the email said, ‘Put me in, coach.’ … A lot of people were trying to get management meetings with me. I said, who the hell could it be? And he said, ‘Irving Azoff.’ Irving Aaaaazoff!”

“Now, Irving, I would like to say (it) in front of everyone in the world. Because I am crazy sometimes, but I always am cool to apologize. So I want it to let it be known, Irving, I’m sorry that I gave you that ‘c—sucker of the year award,’ for whatever reason I gave it to you. You didn’t deserve it. I mean, you did deserve it, and you know that. But now I love you and I’m your friend.”

Azoff corrected her on the exact title of his rescinded honor. “I think the award was for the day or the week, right? …  Listen, I was only upset that I didn’t win the award for the year. You know, I don’t believe in small.”

Therein followed some business talk, as Minaj wondered aloud if Azoff’s purpose for being in London was “getting me some money,” and her new manager responded: “Of course I’m getting you some money. You’re gonna make me look like the smartest guy alive. My timing’s great. You were always the queen, but you’re gonna blow up even bigger now.”

To recount history, Minaj’s problems with Scott and Azoff date back to when her last album, “Queen,” failed to debut at No. 1, coming in behind her rapper rival’s “Astroworld.” Minaj called foul on everyone from Scott to Billboard, Spotify and even Kylie Jenner for allegedly skewing the results.

Later, Minaj accused her future manager of sabotaging her by spreading rumors about the reasons behind her tour being called off. “The c—sucker of the day is Irving Azoff,” she said then. “And I’m gonna tell you why. Allegedly, he tried to put out a smear campaign against my tour, and contacted people in the media to spread negative things about my tour. … May God be with you, Irving. It’s disgusting what these people have been systematically trying to do.”

Minaj was upset at the time with media reports that her headlining tour of America had been “canceled,” insisting the fall 2018 dates had merely been “postponed” and that it would begin in earnest in May 2019. The U.S. tour has yet to be rescheduled. Reports that she was in talks to go out on the road with Chris Brown did not come to fruition, as Brown announced his fall tour in recent days, and sources insisted their being booked together was never under serious consideration.

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